“Putin summoned me to his office and asked for explanation”: board No.1 pilot on extreme landing with the president
The incident in the sky occurred on the flight Moscow - St. Petersburg.
Ex-pilot of the presidential Il-96 Vladimir Fedorushkin has spoken about the emergency situation on board the presidential plane.
The incident occurred on board the flight Moscow - St. Petersburg, when Vladimir Putin was going for an important meeting.
“The weather in Moscow and St. Petersburg was very bad for piloting, a side wind both here and there. There was gusting wind. And then we took off. At the level of 5-6 meters, we had the heaviest bumpiness. It was clear sky turbulence,” Fedorushkin told NTV.
According to him, it was the hardest flight in his career.
“I’ve been a pilot for 40 years, but never encountered such conditions. The autopilot was not working, and the steering wheel was limited to one third of the stroke. We gained 9 thousand kilometers, and we bounced so hard that if we were not fastened, we would have ended up with our heads in the ceiling. The overloads were very strong. It was raining in St. Petersburg; the landing strip was almost flooded. Our steering wheel – a turn that we must withstand during landing – moved only one third. In conditions when it’s movement is not restricted – even then it is difficult to grip on it.
The pilot noted that the plane successfully landed in Pulkovo, despite the weather. After that, he had to explain the reasons for the extreme landing to the president.
“Naturally, Vladimir Vladimirovich summoned me to his office. He asked me what it was. We had a little talk. Of course, not a pleasant one. The probability of moving off the strip was 90%. But we did not,” Fedorushkin added.
Video: Board No.1 pilot on extreme landing with Putin